thorough study of the report reveals an increase in incidents of racism,
violence and incitement in the country. Racist incitement is usually led by or
involves politicians and religious or social leaders. These cases of
instigation and incitement originate mostly from political or religious
rivalry; political, religious and social intolerance; and prejudice. Also, in
large sections of the public, as well as among important decision makers, there
are prominent racist stances towards weakened groups such as the Arab public,
Ethiopians, Mizrahi Jews, migrant workers, asylum seekers and refugees. These
stances generate gaps, create remoteness and alienation, and promote
de-legitimization. Incitement against entire groups of the population and
de-legitimization of their existence and full civil rights are established when
the general public begins to take active parts in these campaigns.
effects of the war and of the last electoral campaign are especially noticeable
in the report findings of the relevant periods. The findings indicate that at
least 160 documented cases out of 237 in different fields (racist legislation,
racism of elected officials and opinion leaders, racism among citizens, racism
in the elections and of the security forces) occurred during Operation
Protective Edge (July-August 2014). Thus, 67.5% of the total documented cases
in this year’s report happened in the two months of the war. This finding
demonstrates the extreme influence of racist incitement that can lead to
unbearable measures, endangering the general public. Furthermore, this mass of
racist incidents can capture the public mind.
There is a danger that it may become the common norm of accepted racism.
report indicates a large increase in documented racist events this year (237
cases in total as opposed to 161
in the parallel chapters of the previous report) and a
marked increase of racist events towards the Arab public in Israel (192 in total as opposed to 113 in the parallel chapters
of the previous report). It should be mentioned that there was also an increase
in racism among elected officials and opinion leaders towards the Mizrahi
public in Israel.
While the previous report did not note any event, this report includes 5 events
of racist incitement towards the Mizrahi public, and the election campaign for
the 20th Knesset apparently had considerable influence. There was
also an increase of the reported racist incidents towards Ethiopians amongst
citizens but mainly by the police, while the previous report did not mention
any events of this kind, this report states 9 events. On the other hand, the
report shows a decrease of incidents involving refugees and work migrants, from
8 to 4 among elected officials and opinion leaders and from 18 to 5 among
is not possible to summarize this report without asking the question: to what
measure does a racist atmosphere and\or the qualification of it affects
starting a war, especially when there are dozens of "price tag"
incidents throughout the report that are also often reported by the police
spokesmen ship. These are not
"price tag" incidents that happened in the occupied territories, but
in Arab populated areas in Israel,
such as the Galilee. One must consider the
idea that these incidents preceding the July-August war prepared the ground for
the war, with the help of a volatile atmosphere full of hostility and hate
between Jews and Arabs in Israel.
a more positive note, the repeated statements of the President of Israel,
Reuven Rivlin, against violence are a breath of fresh air and of hope, and
point to a possible solution for eradicating racism in its bluntest form and
eliminating its devastating effects on society. Subversion to eradication of
racism is possibly the only way to move forward towards peace in our region.